Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on Monday stability could not be achieved in the Middle East without Tehran's help, responding to criticism of the Islamic Republic from US President Donald Trump who is visiting the region.
Trump called for a US alliance with Muslim countries on Sunday aimed at fighting terrorism, singling out Iran as a major source of funding and support for militants in the Arab world.
Rouhani, a pragmatist who won last week's presidential election, hit back hard. "Who can say regional stability can be restored without
Iran? Who can say the region will experience total stability without Iran?" he said at a news conference. At a weekend summit in Riyadh, Trump accused Iran of funding and arming "terrorists, militias and other extremist groups" in Iraq, Yemen, Lebanon and backing President Bashar al-Assad in Syria's civil war.